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Potatoes are recalled after Listeria found

  • February 20, 2009 - 11:22 PM

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture issued a consumer advisory Friday for some refrigerated potato products made by Northern Star Co. after testing found Listeria bacteria in a sample of Simply Potatoes Southwest Style Hash Browns.

No one has reported an illness related to the products.

Northern Star, a subsidiary of Minnetonka-based Michael Foods Inc., has issued a voluntary recall.

Products included in the recall are hash browns, wedges and slices under the brand names Simply Potatoes, Diners Choice and Farm Fresh with "use by" dates of March 29, 2009, to April 3, 2009. For a specific list of products, consumers can call the company at 1-800-228-8105. More information is also available on the Agriculture Department web site, www.mda.state.mn.us.

The recalled products are supposed to be properly cooked to ensure that they are safe to eat. However, consumers sometimes undercook them or heat them in a microwave oven, which may not kill the bacteria, officials said.

Consumption of food contaminated with Listeria can cause fever, severe headaches, neck stiffness and nausea. Healthy people rarely contract Listeriosis, but it can cause fatal infections in high-risk groups such as infants, the elderly and those with weakened immune systems. It can also lead to miscarriages and stillbirths in pregnant women.

Consumers who believe they may have become ill after eating the product should contact their health care provider and the Minnesota Foodborne Illness Hotline toll free number at 1-877-366-3455.

JOSEPHINE MARCOTTY

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